elephant duo

This was not in my knitting plans at all. One day, I simply found myself picking up the gray and yellow yarn, thinking that they go well together, and from there onwards there was no stopping me. I guess that’s what photos of cute babies do to one.

The duo was initially meant to be a trio, including a pair of gray booties. But to my great distress I had discovered that my favourite bootie pattern has in the meantime been taken off Ravelry, which led to trying out another one and failing miserably several times. I kept ending up with two different-sized booties, no matter how many times I ripped and re-tried. Yes, baby knits are great because they involve few stitches and are thus quick. But the fact that they involve few stitches also means that a difference of 3 or 4 stitches in a row makes a huge difference in the size of the finished object. And thus I decided in the end that an elephant trio would be too matchy-matchy anyway and that no self-respecting baby boy would match more than two items of clothing like ever. And therefore it actually would have been totally silly to give him booties as well, right? Right.

The hat pattern is Gooseberry, which I love for its simple elegance and stretchy practicality. My only objection was the lack of specificity about the size. The pattern simply indicated it was a “baby size”, which in my book is anything between 0 and 12 months, and therefore not terribly helpful if you’re aiming for anything more specific than that and do not have the intended recipient on hand to estimate as you go along. As a result I ended up playing around with the numbers and hoping it fits. I’ll let you know when I find out.

The vest is Milo, which is just a godsend blank canvas for an adorable baby gift. There are so many lovely versions available to draw inspiration from, ranging from cables to colourwork to rainbow striping… I could spend hours just looking at all the different ideas on Ravelry and planning dozens of different Milos to knit up some day. The only thing I didn’t like about the colourwork here was that, done in merino yarn, it looks pixelated rather than with nice round edges. This led to people not always recognising what the pattern was supposed to be (“Such cute piglets!”, my mother exclaimed upon seeing it, for instance). But I still did not yet dare knit something wooly for new parents, the last thing they want to be doing is worrying if the wool is chafing their baby’s cheeks and the last thing I want to be doing is wondering if the baby drool is going to make the vest felt (let’s not even talk about handwashing, I dare not utter that word in their company… ;)



Time to reveal some Xmas knits! Yay! :)

Well, there is not much to say about this one, except that it’s awesome. Millwater was fun, easy, addictive (and consequently – fast). The pattern is lovely and I recommend it very highly! I especially love the bouncy luscious cable…

Even though I finished it in the first half of December, of course I put off the weaving in of the ends all the way to Christmas Eve. So in the end the cowl joined its new owner unblocked. I just stretched it forcefully a few times, to even out the stitches, and I think it worked ok.

The recipient was thrilled! Thrilled I tell you! It was all I had been hoping for. This was a total win! :)

knitted gifts for others

Sure, by all means, but this year there is only one thing on my own wishlist:

My, I can’t wait to get my hands on this one! If you like cooking and don’t know The Smitten Kitchen blog yet, then you need to drop everything right this minute and go over there. You’re welcome. ;)

(I’m personally still hesitating between the US and UK editions, as normally neither of the measurement styles is very much compatible with my European brain used to metric recipes… In any case, 2013 is going to be a very yummy year!)

when deadlines are looming…

…my strategy is, apparently, to drop everything and cast on something that is due in exactly 11 months.

And, actually, I think it was an excellent strategy. It made me happy. That’s what knitting is supposed to do anyway. And the more I remember that knitting makes me happy, the more likely it is that I’ll crack down on xmas knitting.

gray is all around me

I’m busy busy busy with my Xmas knitting, and I’m enjoying it too! This evening I decided to take a break from life to do things that refill my batteries instead, and used the time gained to photograph some of the things I have in progress (albeit in crappy artificial light). I was a bit surprised to discover that all of them contained at least a little bit of gray! It seems to be my colour of choice for knits this season! Here’s the proof…

You’ve already seen Millwater (which, in the meantime, has been finished). Then there’s another completely gray item.

And after that there’s all sorts of gray combos.

Medium gray and dark red.

Baby gray and baby yellow.

Dark grey and dark purple.

You’re getting detail shots only on purpose. All of these are gifts, so more to be revealed in a few weeks… But considering the amount of gits I’m knitting, this is going to be one busy blog after xmas day!

Have you noticed any patterns in your colour choices this season?

the little deeds that make people awesome

The guys who work in the men’s clothing shop next door to my house deciding (completely spontaneously) to sign for my packages when I’m not at home, so that I don’t have to go to the post office to pick them up. (Which meant that when I got home in the evening, I could immediately play with the yarn I had been expecting impatiently!)


The colleagues at work buying me some cooking equipment as a gift and then spending several minutes explaining that they didn’t want to buy yarn because they don’t know much about it and they wanted to spare me from receiving something crappy that I wouldn’t be able to use.


The stitch-n-bitch friend understanding that, when I wrote Can I please borrow your yarn swift some time next week? I really meant I really really really want to wind yarn right now. and arranging that her boyfriend hands it over within several hours even though she is halfway across Europe at the time.



You are all simply AWESOME. I hope you know it.

feel free to stop calling me fridica…

…and address me instead as The Little Xmas Knitting Factory.


This year at least I started earlier. Though I’m not any more organised than I was last year. I am casting things on impulsively and haphazardly – but surprisingly it is working for now. It is making me realize that I have indeed matured as a knitter: two or three years ago, it would have terrified me to cast on for an Xmas gift on the 30th of November as it would have seemed an impossible task to finish on time! Now I am confident that there are a few projects I can finish in that time.


At the moment I am working feverishly on this. One of my family members last year said that she would like “just a scarf”. “Just a scarf” is fine with me, but a bit boring (especially since I had to stick with gray as I’m really not confident about her colour tastes), and Millwater by Beth Kling seemed like the perfect solution. The knitting is still simple and fast (and highly pleasurable, I might add!), and the result will be more or less “just a scarf”, but with a little twist or two to make it more special.

After just a few days, I’m already more than halfway done. Which is good because I have loads of other Xmas projects waiting to be cast on impulsively!